“You killed my son, and now you must die.”
No, this is not the last thing my exmother-in-law said to me……although THAT is definitely material for a later blog…or therapy session…or both.
But I digress.
No, that line was spoken by a lady who terrorized me in two (maybe three) different states. A lady who still makes it impossible for me to sleep with drawers, cupboard doors or closet doors open. A lady who haunted my dreams for 5 years: The Lady with the Flashlight Eyes. Yeah, laugh now….go ahead. We’ll see if you’re still laughing at the end.
I don’t remember how old I was when I had the first dream. Maybe twelve? Maybe thirteen? But I certainly remember that first dream:
It is almost night, and somehow, I am alone, at the bottom of the hill. The wind is whipping around me, and it has begun to rain. I know I must make it up the hill quickly, before the rain makes the hill insurmountable, and forces me to walk home the long way. And “the long way”, would mean that I would be walking in the dark. I struggle up the hill, ignoring the whispering wind, pulling my jacket away from the grasping tree limbs, pushing my damp hair back from my face. The ground is quickly becoming a muddy stream. I frantically grab at the tall weeds to keep from falling.
“Can I help you, dear?” A voice and a hand appear from the top of the hill. “Yes,” I respond, taking the hand, “ thank you.”
The hand belongs to a woman – maybe in her thirties or forties. She has a broad face, and wild curly brown hair. But her eyes….are strange. In the setting light, it’s hard to tell the color. Are they brown? Black? Is the light playing a trick on my eyes? For it seems as if there is no white—
“What is a lovely young girl like you doing out?”
“Oh, I’m not out, m’am. I’m on my way home. See? That’s my house right down the street,” I answered, pointing to my house halfway down the block.
“Oh, I see. And where were you? Were you out with friends?”
“No, I was babysitting,” I responded. “How come the house is so dark? Aren’t Mom and Dad home yet?” I thought to myself.
“Oh, so you were earning money. How responsible of you.”
“Huh? I’m sorry, I was distracted. What did you say?”
I turn to look at her, just as the last beam of sunlight disappeared. And yes, her eyes are black! There is no white part around the outs---but wait! What’s happening to her eyes? They’re glowing….they’re growing, bigger. Shining—
“I said, how responsible!” She grabs both of my arms, and pulls me close, closer to those shining orbs that reside where her eyes had been, “now that you’ve killed my son, you become responsible! Well, you still must die! You killed my son, and now you must die!”
I break free and run! Run as fast as I can to the door. But I can hear her laughing, almost cackling, “ You must die! You killed my son! I can follow you anywhere! You killed—“
I grab the door handle, and run inside, slamming the door behind me.
“Mom! Dad! Are you here? Hurry! Mom!?!?!?”
“Missy! We’re right here!”
I sit, bolt up in my bed.
“Missy. It’s okay. You just had a bad dream. Are you okay?”
Tune in for the next segment of….of course…..The Lady with the Flashlight Eyes.